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Senators expect to end anonymous 'holds' on nominations

WASHINGTON

Anonymous holds in senate expected to end

Sen. Claire McCaskill said Saturday she has enough votes to end the Senate's long-standing and much-criticized practice of allowing the use of anonymous holds to block nominations. McCaskill, D-Mo., said Sens. Christopher Bond, R-Mo., and Sam Brownback, R-Kan., agreed to support the effort, giving her the 67 votes necessary to change Senate rules. Supporters include nine Republicans, and only Robert Byrd, W.Va., is opposed on the Democratic side. The practice has enraged lawmakers of both parties, allowing the minority to hold up presidential nominations with no public admission by the intervening senator. Under McCaskill's proposal, senators could still place holds but have to do so publicly.

California

Man shoots four people, himself

A man walked into a restaurant and shot his stepdaughter and her family of four as they ate lunch together, killing the woman's husband and 8-year-old son before fatally shooting himself. The woman's husband, 33, was declared dead at the restaurant and the 8-year-old was declared dead at a hospital, San Bernardino Fire Department spokesman Steve Tracey said. The woman, 29, and her 6-year-old son were hospitalized in critical condition. The names of the victims and the 56-year-old shooter weren't released.

ottawa

Three charged in bank firebombing

Police charged three alleged members of an anti-establishment group in the firebombing of an Ottawa bank last month, an attack that has raised fears of violence during the G-8 and G-20 economic summits. Police said the accused are members of an obscure activist group known as the Fighting For Freedom Coalition, or FFFC-Ottawa, which has threatened to protest the summits next weekend in Toronto and Huntsville, Ontario. Roger Clement, 58, Claude Haridge, 50, and Matthew Morgan-Brown, 32, all from Ottawa, appeared in court and were ordered held in custody until their next appearance later this month.

kenya

American attorney leaves Rwanda

An American attorney accused of minimizing Rwanda's 1994 genocide arrived in Nairobi after Rwanda granted him bail on medical grounds. Reached by phone, Peter Erlinder declined to comment on his case but said he would hold a news conference today. He later texted the Associated Press saying he was happy to be in Nairobi. Erlinder, 62, a professor at William Mitchell College of Law in St. Paul, Minn., was arrested May 28 while in Rwanda to help with the legal defense of an opposition leader.

stockholm

Heir to the throne marries commoner

Crown Princess Victoria wed her former personal trainer, Daniel Westling, the culmination of almost two weeks of festivities in the Swedish capital. The 32-year-old daughter of King Carl XVI Gustav and Queen Silvia, met Westling, 36, almost nine years ago. She is in line to become Sweden's first female regent since Ulrika Eleonora, who reigned from 1719-20, and the fourth ever. The constitution was adjusted in 1980 to allow for the oldest child, regardless of gender, to inherit the throne.

Time wires

Senators expect to end anonymous 'holds' on nominations 06/19/10 [Last modified: Saturday, June 19, 2010 11:57pm]

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